Submitted by: Sister L. Harris
Related scriptures: Numbers 30:2(1)- 36:13, Psalm 111 & Jeremiah 1:1-2:3
As believers in Yeshua we are responsible for every spoken word and vow made. In these verses, Yeshua was teaching and giving a warning to the people. He reminded them of what Israel was told by Adonai through Moshe v. 33b “Do not break your oath and keep your vows to Adonai” Lev 19:12; Number 30: 3(2) & Deut 23:22(21). These verses reference the commands of Adonai to the people to be Holy and set apart, careful of their words. He also reminds them that failing to fulfill their vow is a sin unto Him. Yeshua also tells them “not to swear by heaven or earth”. With this he is reminding the people that Adonai is the creator of everything and he protects what is His. (Isaiah 66:1 & Psalms 48:3) In this chapter Yeshua is teaching the people of how they are to conduct their daily lives just as Adonai did for Israel.
James’ letter he addresses the people in their current state. He first questions why their conduct consists of quarreling and what their true desires are. James then reveals to them that they have not submitted unto the Lord with prayer or they sought the Lord with their own selfish motives and therefore have lack in their lives. As believers, we have to submit to the Lord; having the proper perspective when seeking him; not with selfish motives, however pursuing righteousness and truth that is only found in him. Guarding ourselves against quarreling, arrogance and pride and not attempting to step into Adonai’s place as judge. Proverbs 3:33-34 speaks of how the grace of Adonai is given to the humble in heart and only scorn and disgrace come to those who hold contempt and are wicked. James tells the tribes to submit to Adonai and take a stand against the enemy. Their discontentment came from being outside of G-d’s will which brings about sin. Like Israel, they were not able to see the promises of the Lord because of their own selfish motives and being blinded by sin.
Looking at Matthew and James we can see that making careless vows leads to careless decisions, which leads to careless actions. As believers we have to take into account how we treat our privilege given by the Lord to bring our prayers to Him, in not doing so we will not be drawn away from His presence and led into self-destructive behavior. As the Body of Christ we must stand accountable for every word spoken unto the Lord. Being mindful not to make a vow in haste and outside of G-d’s will and then blame the Him for our failures because of sin. We must remain truly committed to Adonai and the vows we make to guard ourselves from being over taken by the Adversary. Humility before the Lord brings about obedience and in our obedience our faith is strengthened. And when our faith is strengthened we can begin to take hold of the promises of the Lord and therefore every vow made to the Lord will be upheld.